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Preventative Dental Care Specialist

Bellevue Pediatric Dentistry

Pediatric Dentist located in Bellevue, WA

The best way to reduce the amount of dental work a child needs is to practice preventive dental care. The purpose of preventive dental care is to make sure the child is keeping their teeth clean, provide educational resources to improve oral health, and screen for any problems while they’re still minor. Dr. Nolan Gerlach provides preventive dental care services for pediatric patients in Bellevue, Washington. To schedule an appointment for your child, please call the office today.

Preventative Dental Care Q & A

What is preventive dental care?

Preventive dental care is the practice of caring for a child’s teeth to keep them as healthy as possible. During preventive dental care appointments, Dr. Gerlach can also looks for signs of decay or other problems that need to be addressed.
Some of the preventive dental care services available from Bellevue Pediatric Dentistry include:

  • Cleaning and polishing
  • Fluoride treatment
  • X-rays
  • Examinations of teeth and gums

When should preventive dental care begin?

Beginning preventive dental care as early as possible ensures the best results for your child. Dr. Gerlach recommends bringing your child for their first preventive dental care appointment when they turn one year old or get their first tooth.

What happens during a child’s first appointment?

If your child is under the age of three, their first appointment will include:

  • A visual examination of the teeth, mouth, and tongue
  • A cleaning and polishing of the teeth: Only if the child is ready
  • A discussion with parents of any findings
  • A ride on the exam chair, a new toothbrush, and a toy from our Treasure Box

For older children, a first visit may also include a fluoride treatment, digital X-rays, and a more extensive examination.

What happens during a cleaning?

During a cleaning, a dental hygienist uses special tools to remove plaque and tartar from your child’s teeth. The dental hygienist will also floss your child’s teeth, and they may give the child a fluoride treatment and polish as well.
In many cases, children have a cleaning and an exam at the same time.

During the exam, Dr. Gerlach will look check all of the teeth carefully, and he may also review X-rays.

If Dr. Gerlach finds any problems during the exam, he will explain these issues and recommend treatment options. For example, if Dr. Gerlach finds a cavity, he may recommend laser dentistry treatment.

How can parents prevent dental problems?

The best way to prevent cavities and other dental problems is to take good care of your child’s teeth at home. If your child is young, brush their teeth twice a day with a child-safe toothpaste. When your child is old enough to avoid swallowing large amounts of toothpaste, switch to a formula that includes fluoride. As your child becomes more responsible and capable, teach them to brush and floss their own teeth thoroughly.